NaNoWriMo: Day 1

Posted November 1, 2010 in Creative Writing / 0 Comments

NaNoWriMo has finally kicked off! I have added a new feature to the blog- a box that tracks all my Nano stats-and I will be updating it daily. I will also try to post a daily update on my progress if I get the time.

Although some crazy people got up at midnight to start writing, being a lazy student I spent the morning lying in bed reading magazines and not even thinking about Nano. I got up about 11am, ate my breakfast, perused the internet, tidied and hoovered the house and generally procrastinated like a pro before finally sitting down to write about 2pm. But I did write 2872 words, and my daily goal is only 1700, so I’m still quite pleased with myself. For some people, writing as much as possible everyday will be the key to their success, but I know myself well enough to realise that after a hard slog of writing, the next day I will just want to lie in bed watching catchups of the X Factor. So I feel that a little a day (1700 words) will best keep me motivated to continue.

Anyway, I’ve completed the first two chapters (yes my chapters are short!) and I’m quite pleased with them. Before I started writing, I didn’t have a fully outlined plot, just a concept and characters. I didn’t know which perspective I would be using, or the timeframe. But I just began typing randomly, and somehow words began to flow from some unknown place. It has been so long since I have written a story (poems are my usual thing) that it was like the return of an old friend. I had forgotten how good it feels to shape a plot and characters. A lot of the problems I had wondered about were solved very quickly. I discovered that my novel began at the end of the story in third person, and that the main bulk of the novel will be one huge flashback in first person, from Isla’s point of view. I also discovered that Isla may or may not be a murderer, and is currently being assessed in a mental institution. New characters also forced their way into the story: a nameless old man who first finds Isla and a young junior doctor called Blake Browning who is sympathetic to her case and wants to help her open up. It’s funny how all these random things you hadn’t expected just appear from nowhere when you start writing. I’m now really excited to see what tomorrow will bring, both in terms of word count and in terms of what is going to happen next. I’m just as clueless as you are, only my characters know for sure!

Also, I have a microsoft excell document that you can type your word count into and it automatically calculates stats like percentage complete, date you would complete if you stayed at the same rate etc. and generates graphs and a list of stats that you can keep and look back on. If anyone is interested in having a copy, post a comment below or email me at and I’ll send you one.



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